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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
hello guys just purchased my second Saab car. Its a 2003 9-5 ARC model. car is having major problems, i want to include any weird symthom the car is making to further help diagnoise the problem, so get ready for a long read. I bought the car from a lady (currently has 77,000 miles) problem is car sometimes starts and would randomly shut off. car was still at the saab mechanic shop. I went to the shop and the battery was dead, we started it with a jump, car started then shut off, then started and idled great, trans light, check engine, air bag light and triangle light was all on. i tried connecting my scanner and there is no communication with data link connector. i talked to the mechanic he mentioned there was a ground pin on the obd connector pulled back, he fixed it, he mentioned that there is no communications with anything except for the DICE, they checked the leads for the I bus at the DICE and found approx 12 volts, he said those wires should only have 2-3 volts, he said this indicated a major short. also previous mechanic changed the alternator thinking that would fix it.

so today i charged the battery all day, then i turned the ignition on and everything seemed better, the trans light went off and the gear selector indicator on the cluster was working, the power seat started working normally. what i thought was weird is i heard the cooling fans turn on even tho the engine was cold, it stayed on for approx 30 seconds after key was removed. i tryed to start the engine but it would only crank and not start, noticed the tach gauge stayed at zero indicating no spark. i kept trying and trying, i noticed the battery started to get weak then i tried one more time and it fired up. but the lights on the cluster turned off for some odd reason (clusters back light) . the air bag light and triangle were the only lights on now. car ran great, i turned it off after 5 mins, fan stayed on when key was removed then turned off after 30 seconds again. i tried starting it again and it only started after the battery got weak. this time the back light on the cluster worked but if i pressed night panel the lights did not dim like a normal saab would do, the SID was the only one that dimmed. if i turned the turn signals on the arrows will not show on the cluster but the turn signals will work. i talked to the dealer that the lady took it to for inspection and they said that somebody must have crossed the positive and negative terminals on the battery when they tried jumping it. from reading some other info people are saying a bad ECU can cause these problems. what do you guys think? would i have to marry the ECU to the car with a tech II? thanks alot and sorry for the long read. please let me know if i can provide any more info.

EDIT** dont know if this is related to the problem or not but i just went into the car to put some paperwork inside and interior door lights are not working. i thought that was kind of odd.
 

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First thing would check is if the battery is good. The battery could be bad and have a bad cell and will not be able to handle a charge but it will still show correct voltage. A bad battery can cause all sorts of weird problems to appear.
 

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Wow this has never happened to me before....
Your link is my ECU!
anyway, your post led me to 3 thoughts.
1 was the DICE but the mechanic says its good?
2 was a major short, I would pull the maxi fuses and see if the battery still runs dead.
(Is the battery good? I know it holds a change for a while from your post but if it were dying it would be hard to diagnose having to keep the battery fully up.
3 Was the ECU, from what I know you can swap them without Tech II.
check this thread it has some similar symptoms... not all but some.
http://www.saabcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=233071&highlight=dice
... Of course I would love to sell my ECU but check other things first
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
thank you for the replys. i dont think the battery is dying on its own, it was dying from me cranking it so much. i had the battery charging for an entire day and it was at 80% when i removed the charger ( i had it charging with both terminals connected to the car) weird thing is after the battery go weak from me cranking many times thats when the car started finally, after it ran for 5 mins the alternator charged the battery some and if i tried to start it again it wont start till the battery got to the same weak level (you can hear the starter getting weaker and additional light on the dash flicker) the mechanic did say he saw the DICE on the I bus when the tech II was connected, does that mean its good? i will check any of the major groundings. is there any way i can change the DICE for another one without using the tech II? i greatly appreciate the help guys. oh and i would like to purchase the ECU if it would work for mine. would the car start with another ECU plugged in? or would i have to marry it to the car?

EDIT: will check for the buzzing from the relays,
 

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thank you for the replys. i dont think the battery is dying on its own, it was dying from me cranking it so much. i had the battery charging for an entire day and it was at 80% when i removed the charger ( i had it charging with both terminals connected to the car) weird thing is after the battery go weak from me cranking many times thats when the car started finally, after it ran for 5 mins the alternator charged the battery some and if i tried to start it again it wont start till the battery got to the same weak level (you can hear the starter getting weaker and additional light on the dash flicker) the mechanic did say he saw the DICE on the I bus when the tech II was connected, does that mean its good? i will check any of the major groundings. is there any way i can change the DICE for another one without using the tech II? i greatly appreciate the help guys. oh and i would like to purchase the ECU if it would work for mine. would the car start with another ECU plugged in? or would i have to marry it to the car?
If you had battery on the charger for a full day and it was at 80%, that is too low. It sounds like you are getting the voltage but not the full amps.
a good battery should be able to crank the car for at least 15 minutes straight.
(although you would kill the starter)
You can bring it to auto parts place for free checking.
As far as I know the DICE and the ECU are plug and play. The TWICE is not.
Can anyone else confirm this??
That same guy on ebay has an 03 DICE for sale too.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/15083039059...LX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1555.l2649#ht_500wt_1279
I think he is a really good seller and a true gentleman :)
Lower prices, 100% Customer Satisfaction for over 10 years!
But check everything before you buy something you might not need.
 
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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
ok just read this

"
The Dice unit is a electronic control unit that communicates with many of the systems that also connect to the central I bus (electronic highway). Below is a list of devices that the Dice unit communicates with: Exterior lighting system, interior lighting system, rheostat control, acoustic warning, intermittent wiper, headlamp washers, door mirrors, heated rear windows, radiator fan and the AC system. The Dice unit is located in the behind the knee bolster below the steering wheel".​

although the DICE shows on the i bus. im having issues with interior lighting, headlamp washers not working, the radiator fan and a/c does not work, maybe its the dice. If somebody can confirm its plug and plug i will purchase both DICE and ECU right now.​

will take my battery to the parts store for load testing.​
 

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Finally got around to going thru the WIS
The DICE needs to have the VIN married.
The ECU does not need tech II.
just remove and refit.
 

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I'd be checking the main harness connector in the middle of the firewall under the hood. There's a black plastic cover that slides over the connector. Open it up and look for corrosion on the pins. I'd be real surprised if you have a bad ecu (which DOES need to be programmed to the specific car via tech2, think t7 suite works too)
Fan running indicates a loss of communication with the ecu, also check fuse 17
 

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I do agree to check everything first, around 80% of the ECU's returned to Saab were working.

According to the WIS

Control module
To remove
1 Remove the blanking-off washers on the wiper spindle nuts and loosen the nuts slightly.
2 Use a puller, special tool No. 85 80 144 to remove the wiper arms. Remove the nuts and wiper arms.
3 Remove the rubber wiper spindle seals.
4 Remove the two screw clips on the ends of the windscreen cover.
5 Loosen the rubber seal.
6 Remove the windscreen cover by grasping the front edge and lifting upward/forward. Be careful with the bonnet release wire
on the left-hand side.
7 Undo the 4 nuts securing the control module's protective cover.
8 Tilt up the cover and unplug the control module multiconnector by releasing the catch on the right.
9 Undo the 2 control module retaining nuts, a 10 mm magnetic socket can be used.
10 Lift the control module straight up.

To fit
1 Position the control module from above.
2 Fit the 2 control module retaining nuts.
3 Spray the control module multiconnector with Kontakt 61 (part no. 30 04 520) and plug in the connector.
4 Fit the 4 nuts to the control module cover.
5 Fit the windscreen cover. Be careful with the bonnet release wire on the left-hand side.
6 Fit the rubber seal.
7 Fit the two screws in the ends of the windscreen cover.
8 Fit the rubber wiper spindle seals.
9 Fit the wiper arms and nuts.
Adjust the correct wiper parking position according to the marking points on the windscreen.
10 Fit the nuts on the wiper spindles with the blanking-off washers on the nuts.

and the DICE

Control module
To remove
1 Remove lower panel from driver's side.
2 Remove fuse cover.
3 Unplug the connector from on the control module.
4 Remove 2 screws holding DICE.
5 Pull the DICE control module straight out.

1 Fit the control module in place.
2 Screw tight with 2 screws.
3 Plug in the connector to the control module.
4 Refit the fuse cover.
5 Refit the lower panel.
6 After replacing the DICE control module, it must be programmed for the car.
Menu “Programming”
Vehicle Identification Number The easiest way to program the chassis number is to
read the number from the windscreen and program it in
DICE. The information that is available on the bus is
used for different functions in the car.
Spare Part Programming After replacing the DICE module, this programming
must be done.

Since it did not say the ECU needed programming and it did say the DICE needed it I thought the ECU was plug and play??
 
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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
well i pulled both the ECU and DICE out, i just checked the firewall connector, it was real dusty, i blew it with air, now im going to install it with some dielectric grease. i picked up the battery now, they tested it as BAD, there saying battery started overheating so they stopped it, might have a broken cell. im going to test the car with another cars battery temporarly. but considering that somebody reversed the positive and negative wires while trying to jump the car i dont doubt that the ECU or DICE is fried. im going to try installing the WIS again (as you can see i have an open thread about that too) i also found a bunch of relays next to the DICE, are any of those for the DICE?

btw i checked ALL fuses on the car with continuity tester and all were good. i will check again tho
 
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
thank you guys for clearing up the ECU deal.

well off to the store going to purchase a brand new battery now. so weird, i tried another battery but with lower cranking amps. i turned the ignition on and this time the engine fan DID NOT come on like it was doing and the radio works now. i tried cranking it but it did not have enough juice to turn the motor over, after that the fan just kicked on again. im going to purchase a new battery that way i will rule that out.
 
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
update

just put in a brand new battery. i put key in on position the engine fan turned on )= then cranked it, it started for a brief second and shut off, after that it did not start, i kept trying and trying and it only cranked with no starting, whats weird is non of the interior lights worked, i put the interior light switch on door option and only the kick panel lights worked, the ones on the doors did not light up. then i shut the door waited for the lights to turn off, i opened the door and now non of the interior lights worked even though it was on door option (lights worked couple hours ago). i decided to disconnect the Dice unit and i put the key in the on position and there was no change what so ever. its like removing the dice unit did not change anything one bit. i hope i can just get away with another used DICE and program with the tech II. should i change the ECU to be on the safe side too since either way im going to have it programmed with a tech II?
 

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Most ECUs on the 9-5s do not go bad. Most that have been returned to Saab by "saab" mechanics are in good working order.

Sorry if I may have led you astray with ECU, programming is not mentioned in the WIS and it was for the DICE.

I think this info is correct;
Remove the old ECU and plug in the new one. With the Tech-II, go into Diagnostics, 2003, 9-5, Body, TWICE, Immobilizer. That function will synchronize the MIU (instruments), Trionic and TWICE to work correctly./
Glad you got the battery, it was sounding like it was bad.
Always a good investment IMO
 
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Discussion Starter · #16 · (Edited)
^^ i found another thread just like mine and everybody said to change the ECU. considering that somebody tried jumping the car with the battery terminals reversed i think something fried. i will give that ECU a try pm sent. most likely its from the DICE but i want to be on the safe side.

i just went into the car, i opened the door and now all the interior lights are working. i unplugged the DICE and it stopped working. i plugged it back in and ony the kick panel lights worked. i think the DICE is the one crapping out.
 
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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
ok so i found this on the trunk lid wiring loom.




:cry: but it dident solve the problem i am having. i have the WIS now so i have been reading it all day.

i checked the I BUS + and - wires (pin 14 and pin 5) WIS says its supposed to be 2-3 volts and i was getting around 10-11 volts. i also tested for continuity from pin 14 green wire to the cd player plug in the left of the trunk on the quarter panel i got continuty on both I bus wires there :confused: from what i understand the I bus does not run in a series circuit right? when i checked pin 5 i got continuity only on the white wire and not the green wire. this meaning there is a short someplace on the I bus wire right? to make 100% certain im going to run the same tests on the 2001 saab 9-5 that my sister in law drives so i can be sure before tracing that wire down. anybody know if there is any relays associated with the DICE? WIS had another test for the DICE and i checked and it did not pass the test, and then i checked for voltage and it has the 12 volts and ground that it needs :confused:
 

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Well that break in the wiring is normal...
There are a bunch of relays just above the DICE, I think the DICE controls to fuel pump relay not sure of others
 
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